Square Foot Gardening Forum
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Sprouts great but thats it!!!

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Sprouts great but thats it!!!

Post  stellaaaa on 12/18/2010, 1:57 pm

I just started my first SFG. The seeds have sprouted great...in a few days but thats about it. They don't grow much. what's going on?


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Re: Sprouts great but thats it!!!

Post  Furbalsmom on 12/18/2010, 2:46 pm

Stellaaaa, glad you\'re here to our forum.

If you can provide a little more information, perhaps someone in your area can help you out.

How long ago did you plant your SFG? I see you are in or around Naples, FL

If your sprouts came up in a few days, that is really good. How warm are your days and how cool your nights?
That will effect how fast your garden grows. I know a lot of FL had some really cold weather.

Did you use Mel's Mix and were you able to find 5 good varieties of compost?

Give us some more details, please, then perhaps some of your "Neighbors" can give you some real assistance.

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Re: Sprouts great but thats it!!!

Post  Lavender Debs on 12/18/2010, 3:08 pm

Hasn't it been seriously cold in Florida? If I was a seed and my top had sprouted I'd be sending the message to my root to rest a while longer until I give the all clear on the sun side.

Deborah.... telling you to hang on for a bit, you will have beans and tomatoes one day soon.

(Have you seen the videos of the square-foot gardener in Florida on U-Tube? Search "Donna's Square Foot Garden" and "Donna's new garden"
Lavender Debs

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Re: Sprouts great but thats it!!!

Post  stellaaaa on 12/18/2010, 3:36 pm

I've planted seeds since Sept when it was still pretty hot out (high 80s). At that time the only plant that produced anything was the cucumbers - more than I could eat and i only planted 2. the corn grew about 2 feet tall and that was it. Some corn didn't get more than 6 inches tall. One jalapeno plant produced 4 to 5 peppers but the others planted at the same time sprouted, grew 2 inches and that was it. they didn't die nor grow anymore. The sweet peppers grew about 1 to 2 inches and nothing. The tomatoes grew approx 18 inches and that was it.
I made Mel's mix as per his instructions including using 5 different compost materials and course vermiculite. The only thing I planted a several weeks ago that is doing o.k. is leaf lettuce but it is growing soooo slowly. I don't have much to harvest even long after the number of days till harvest listed on the back of the seed packet. The seeds that sprouted over 2 months ago and are only 1 inch tall should be taken out and replanted? or is ther any hope for them? Any suggestions you could give will help.


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Post  ander217 on 12/18/2010, 4:40 pm

Welcome to the forum, Stellaaaa.

There are several things that could be wrong with your plants. Have they been getting enough water? Did your temperatures turn too cool for them to grow? Seeds don't germinate when the soil gets too cool. Crops that have sprouted will sort of hibernate rather than grow until it warms up again. Did you use compost that was tainted with something, such as horse manure that had herbicide sprayed on it?

Even though you used five kinds of compost, some of it may not have been very good. You might try adding amendments one-at-a-time of blood meal or fish emulsion for nitrogen, bone meal for phosphorus, green sand for potassium, and/or epsom salts for magnesium and see if any of those jump start your sluggish plants.

Usually a plant with severe deficiencies will develop tell-tale signs. Nitrogren deficiency will show as yellowing of the leaves and stunted growth. Other deficiencies cause red-colored leaves, or deep-colored veining, or dead-looking spots on the leaves. I incorrectly mixed my first batch of MM, and all the leaves of a catnip plant I transplanted to it turned red. Eventually I added bone meal upon the advice of a forum member, and in just a few days my catnip had turned green again. Cabbage grew fine in that bad mix but other things grew poorly or not at all.

Do you have neighbors who are having similar problems? You might ask neighbors who garden what is best for you to grow in your area at this time.

Good luck, and keep us posted on how things turn out.

glad you\'re here


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Re: Sprouts great but thats it!!!

Post  Furbalsmom on 12/19/2010, 4:16 am

It could just be the short days that are affecting the plants.

I have planted a few things really late and they were sooooooooooooooo slow to grow. Of course I am in OR and our temps have really cooled down, but here on the coast, we have only had two light frosts this fall.

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Re: Sprouts great but thats it!!!

Post  Chopper on 12/19/2010, 5:20 pm

I agree with what everyone has written.

Some plants are day length sensitive and we are 2 days from the shortest day of the year. After that you may see some action.

Also, I found my peppers grew, stopped, and then grew again. Who the heck knows what that was about. And the FL cold spell could not have helped.

Add a little food, wait for things to warm up and day length to increase and you might see some sudden progress.

Keep us informed.


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